4 of the 5 shortlisted authors for this year’s Alberta Readers’ Choice Award are from the Edmonton area. We are thrilled to be welcoming all four of them to this very special Writers’ Corner in May to talk about their nominated works. Please join us for a great afternoon celebrating local literature.
Event: Writers’ (and Readers) Corner
When: Saturday, May 24th. 1:30 pm
Where: Jasper Place EPL Branch (9010 – 156 Street)
Join 4 of the 5 shortlisted authors for the Alberta Readers’ Choice Award as they come to talk about their nominated books. The writers will also be joined by local readers who enjoyed these books and they will be giving their takes on why each of these books is very special, from a reader’s perspective. Join us as we discuss and celebrate these great local books and authors.
Michael Hingston is the books columnist for the Edmonton Journal. Called “one of the sharpest young literary critics in this country” by 49th Shelf, his journalism has also appeared in the Globe and Mail, Salon, Eighteen Bridges magazine, and McSweeney’s Internet Tendency.
His first novel, The Dilettantes (Freehand), was a #1 regional bestseller and received a starred review in Quill & Quire; the Winnipeg Free Press said it “may well be the Great Canadian Comic Novel.” Hingston’s fiction also appears in the anthology 40 Below (Wufniks).
Born and raised in North Vancouver, Hingston now lives in Edmonton with his partner and two children.
Diana Davidson lives in Edmonton, Alberta. Davidson’s debut novel Pilgrimage was published by Brindle & Glass in September 2013. Pilgrimage is a book about the violent intimacy of a small place and is set at around the Lac St. Anne Métis settlement, Edmonton, and St. Albert in the 1890s. Pilgrimage has been heralded as a work of “frontier feminism” by The Edmonton Journal Books Columnist Michael Hingston. Kim McCullough, for Prism, has said “Davidson has masterfully turned the tables on these historical ‘facts’ by using them to create a fictional world more real than the one found in any history book”. The novel has been on The Edmonton Journal bestseller list all but two weeks since its debut.
Davidson’s other writing has been long-listed for the Canada Writes CBC creative nonfiction prize (2012) and has won the Writers’ Guild of Alberta “Jon Whyte Memorial Essay Prize” (2010). Her work has appeared in 40 Below, Alberta Views, Avenue Edmonton Magazine, Little Fiction, The Winnipeg Review, Women’s Words as well as the academic anthologies Analyzing Mad Men and Spectral America. She has a Ph.D. in literature and has taught at the University of Alberta and the University of York, UK. She was chosen as one of Edmonton’s “Top 40 Under 40” by Avenue Magazine in late-2011.
Theresa Shea has published poetry, fiction, essays, reviews, and articles in a number of Canadian magazines and journals. Her novel The Unfinished Child dramatically explores society’s changing views of Down syndrome over the past sixty years. The story offers an unflinching and compassionate history of the treatment of people with Down syndrome and their struggle for basic human rights.
Born in Maryland and raised throughout the United States, she moved to Canada in 1977 and currently lives with her husband and three children in Edmonton, Alberta.
Todd Babiak grew up in a small house in an oil town, with a mother who read horror novels and a father who cut the lawn with his shirt off. He pursued politics and literature in university. He spent a good part of the 1990s in Montreal. These were almost-separation times. It was bracing.
His novel, Come Barbarians (Harper Collins) is a gripping novel of love and loss, murder, revenge and political conspiracy. Todd Babiak has created a complex, magnetic character forced to confront his bleakest hour and his darkest impulses.
Today he lives in Edmonton, a northern city of mystery and enterprise, with long writing trips to France. Sometimes a month, sometimes a year.
Voting ends May 31st.